Discrimination | Gay Marriage | News | Washington

Florist Tells Longtime Gay Customer That She Won't Do His Wedding Because of Her Relationship with Jesus: VIDEO

Stuzman

A Washington florist is violating the state's laws after refusing to do flowers for a gay longtime customer's wedding, KNDU reports:

Rob wanted to go with the florist he and Curt have been using for years, Barronelle Stuzman, the owner of Arlene's Flowers in Richland.

However, when he asked her, Stuzman politely declined. "And I just took his hands and I said I'm sorry I can't do your wedding because of my relationship with Jesus Christ," said Stuzman who believes marriage should be between one man and one woman...

...Stuzman said she had mixed reactions and so much attention that she posted a response on Arlene's Flowers' Facebook page.

"I've had hate mail. I've had people who want to burn my building, I've had people say they'll never shop here again and tell all their friends. And I've had other people say thanks for standing up for your convictions and we'll shop here and we'll back you in any way we can," Stuzman said.

Despite their differences and the opinions of many, Jill Mullins, of the QLaw Foundation, which is a gay rights attorney organization, said Stuzman did violate the Washington Law Against Discrimination, found in RCW 49.60.030, the Freedom from discrimination - Declaration of civil rights.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

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Comments

  1. She's a mean old woman. Anyone who would do something like this is simply mean. It's a mean, nasty, intentionally spiteful thing to do.

    Also, it violates Washington state law. Rob Ingersoll's face was really devastating to see. He was truly broken up about this. It's so sad to see people hurting during what should be a celebratory time. Hopefully he sues this awful woman and her business. That's the only way bigots will learn.

    Posted by: Francis | Mar 6, 2013 7:08:41 PM


  2. these trolls for jesus must be held accountable to the law otherwise equality will never be attained. She is running a business not a church. She caters to the public not those she finds acceptable.

    Posted by: terry | Mar 6, 2013 7:09:29 PM


  3. Here's hoping her gay employees go work for the competition.

    Posted by: Kenneth | Mar 6, 2013 7:09:32 PM


  4. Who's gonna do flowers for her marriage to Jesus?

    Posted by: danswon | Mar 6, 2013 7:17:11 PM


  5. They ask Jesus for help, then Jesus sends customers, and they turn them away... sad

    Posted by: Carlos | Mar 6, 2013 7:17:27 PM


  6. Here we go again--what makes some business owners so thick as to think that their personal relationship with unicorns or chocolate or Jesus Christ (who I'm guessing is unaware that he and Barronelle are BFFs) matters when they own a business that is meant to serve the public without singling groups out for discrimination. Ultimately, she'll have to choose between Jesus (cause Jesus was all about turning people away) and taking the consequences of ignoring the law. Eventually they'll learn that this is no more acceptable than turning away a couple because of their race, ethnicity, or religious beliefs.

    Posted by: Ernie | Mar 6, 2013 7:19:53 PM


  7. Washington business owners have to be taught that if you offer services to the general public, you cannot discriminate against the public based on your religious beliefs. I hope this flower shop owner is made a very public example.

    Posted by: Howard | Mar 6, 2013 7:20:34 PM


  8. Sorry, ah just can' give no flowers to you Jews. I know you're buying them for your wife for Seder dinner, but that's against mah relashuship with Jeebus.

    *barf*

    Society's failures love, more than anything else it seems, the Freedom to Discriminate.

    may she go out of business. and have no insurance. and then take ill

    Posted by: Little Kiwi | Mar 6, 2013 7:21:41 PM


  9. There are plenty of straight marriages that Jesus would not have approved of. Will you refuse flowers for those weddings? Since your opposition to gay marriage is based on the premise that homosexuality is sinful, would you refuse flowers for a guy to give to his boyfriend?

    You either have an austere business model or you're a hypocrite and a bigot.

    Posted by: Kyle | Mar 6, 2013 7:28:58 PM


  10. You know, having imaginary friends past the age of five is really pretty sad. Especially when your "relationship" with them gets in the way of you appreciating the real world.

    Posted by: Caliban | Mar 6, 2013 7:30:18 PM


  11. GIRL you are still going to go to hell if you think your god hates the gays or gay marriage, after all you have been collecting their money and business for years now, knowing full well they were gay.

    Posted by: johnosahon | Mar 6, 2013 7:32:10 PM


  12. Jesus may love you, but I think you're a c*nt.

    Posted by: beef and fur | Mar 6, 2013 7:37:11 PM


  13. Why would any gay man work for this woman? And for all the bigots that say "I have gay friends", just because you consider them friends, doesn't mean they consider you one.

    Posted by: JT | Mar 6, 2013 7:38:10 PM


  14. here's the thing - and it's similar to how i feel about the "no gays for marriage" arguments: be consistent and i'll be fine with your bigotry.

    she should only provide flowers for heterosexuals who are of her specific Christian denomination, and make sure that the flowers she gives out are only to be used for her version of Christian Use.


    just like if the anti-gay marriage folks made marriage something that only a heterosexual couple that passes a rigorous fertility test can have access to. civil unions for all that can't conceive naturally; gay or straight.

    alas, that would be applying logic and reason to the minds of people who possess neither.

    time and time again, they only become "Christians" when gays come up.

    Posted by: Little Kiwi | Mar 6, 2013 7:39:47 PM


  15. The Jesus I learned about in Sunday school would have done the flowers and gone to the wedding. The last person he'd have spent time with would be the pious, self-riteous temple gatekeepers who decide who gets in and who has to stay out on the street.

    Posted by: Trev | Mar 6, 2013 7:44:56 PM


  16. Her excuse sounds no more ridiculous than a gay wedding.

    Posted by: TG | Mar 6, 2013 7:47:55 PM


  17. Rob and Curt should boycott her shop and get all their gay and straight friends to do likewise. They have been customers of her shop for years, didn't they ever detect that they were dealing with a bigot?

    Posted by: andrew | Mar 6, 2013 7:52:39 PM


  18. I'm proud to be gay and proud to be a Christian. I have no issues. Why do people like this have issues. I love and accept my orientation and love my Christianity.
    I would gladly arrange flowers but I don't have that magic touch.
    Move on to another florist that deserves your pink dollar and will give you kindness!

    Posted by: blonder | Mar 6, 2013 7:52:50 PM


  19. Like the homophobic cake makers in Gresham, Oregon she'll probably see a short term up tick in business from the local haters (i.e. good Christians). That's good for her because she'll need the extra cash to pay for her legal fees and that of the customer she denied service too. He should hire a law firm from Seattle, at a nice reasonable hourly rate of $250.00

    RCW 49.60.030
    Freedom from discrimination — Declaration of civil rights.

    http://apps.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=49.60.030

    (2) Any person deeming himself or herself injured by any act in violation of this chapter shall have a civil action in a court of competent jurisdiction to enjoin further violations, or to recover the actual damages sustained by the person, or both, together with the cost of suit including reasonable attorneys' fees or any other appropriate remedy authorized by this chapter or the United States Civil Rights Act of 1964 as amended, or the Federal Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988 (42 U.S.C. Sec. 3601 et seq.).

    Posted by: Dearcomrade | Mar 6, 2013 7:53:43 PM


  20. Based on her relationship with Jesus? But every bit of evidence we have from the New Testament indicates that Jesus wasn't a homophobe. And there's always the possibility that Jesus was either gay or bisexual. What of this woman's relationship with Jesus in that case?

    Posted by: Artie_in_Lauderdale | Mar 6, 2013 7:54:24 PM


  21. Clearly she didn't mind taking their money before. If she really has such a good relationship with Jesus, she should instantly return all that past business cash (filthy lucre, echhh) - and take care in the future to ask her customers their sexual orientation before doing any business with them. One can't be too careful when in such a "holy" personal relationship.

    Posted by: Mandrake | Mar 6, 2013 7:57:55 PM


  22. BLONDER: If you've bought Christianity and Gay marriage... It takes all kinds to make a world..

    Posted by: Jeff | Mar 6, 2013 7:58:02 PM


  23. Oh, let her be. If she feels that strongly about it (and she seemed polite in declining), let the guy go to one of the other dozen flower shops in his area. We don't need to make an issue out of every single mom & pop store that has an issue with gay marriage. Is she violating the law? Fine. Whatever. We aree winning this fight. Public opinion is shifting to our side daily. We don't need to hurl insults at a middle-aged woman. I'm sure many feral opinionated posters here will disagree with this, which is fine. Lets pick our battles wisely and not go after every homophobe in every nook and cranny.

    Posted by: will | Mar 6, 2013 7:58:48 PM


  24. Beef and Fur for the win!

    Posted by: Artie_in_Lauderdale | Mar 6, 2013 7:59:41 PM


  25. Exactly where in the New Testament does Jesus say, "Blessed are those who are persecuted for refusing to give flowers to gay couples, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." Just curious.

    I mean, it's not like Jesus wanted to corner the market on flowers.

    Posted by: Bill | Mar 6, 2013 8:05:23 PM


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